Local swimmer competes in state competition

Local competitive swimmer, Avery Johnson recently competed in a state swim competition in Oro Valley. Johnson is 12 years old and is on the “Swim Neptune” team. She swam in 6 individual events and 4 relays. In the relays, Avery and her team earned three 2nd place finishes and one 3rd place finish. For the individual events, Avery was 5th place in the 1000 Freestyle, 5th place in the 50 Freestyle, 4th place in the 100 Individual Medley, 2nd in the 200 Butterfly, 2nd in the 50 Butterfly, and 1st in the 100 Butterfly.

Avery swam in the 1000 Freestyle on Thursday and came in ranked #5. She cut time from 11:52.94 to 11:27.66. This was good enough to maintain 5th place. 1st place in the event was Emily Dodd with a time of 10:50.70.

Friday was Avery’s big event–the 100 Butterfly. She was ranked #2 in the state and Julia Kereszturi was #1. They raced against each other once in January where Julia beat Avery by less than half a second. In the preliminary heat, Avery cut time from 1:01.45 to 1:00.78. This earned her 1st place in the championship final Friday night. One perk of being first in the championship heat is that you get to pick your walk-up music. Avery chose “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC. She cut more than a full second in the championship heat and won with a time of 59.67. She was the only girl in her age group to be under one minute in the 100 Fly this year. (And only one boy in her age group had a better time than her.) Julia came in second with a time of 1:00.79. In addition to the 100 Fly, Avery also swam in the 400 Freestyle Relay with three other members of Swim Neptune. They got 2nd place. Phoenix Swim Club got 1st.

On Saturday, Avery swam the 100 Individual Medley (all 4 strokes in one race) and the 50 Butterfly in prelims. She cut time from 1:05.70 to 1:04.99 in the 100 IM. This placed her in 3rd for the championship final. In the finals, she swam a 1:04.84, which was good enough for 4th place overall. Sydney Blackhurst swam a 1:01.53 for first place. For the 50 Fly, she added time in the preliminary round from 27.96 to 28.47. This put her at 5th place in the final round. In the championship heat, her time was 27.50, good enough for 2nd place overall. Once again, Sydney Blackhurst got 1st place with a time of 27.33. Avery also swam the Butterfly leg of the 200 Medley Relay. Her team got 3rd place and once again, Phoenix Swim Club got 1st.

On Sunday, Avery swam the 200 Fly and the 50 Freestyle in prelims. For the 200 Fly, she cut time from 2:23.86 to 2:18.43. This earned her 1st place in the championship heat. She chose “Butterfly” by Crazy Town for her walk-up music. It was a close race, but Avery got 2nd with a time of 2:14.44. Emma Sayers beat her with a time of 2:14.19. For the 50 Free, Avery had an entry time of 26.71 and cut it down to 26.48 in prelims. This put her at 3rd place for the championship round. Even cutting her time down to 26.35, Avery was only able to get 5th place. Maya Lewis got 1st with a time of 25.55. There were two more relays on Sunday: the 200 Freestyle Relay and the 400 Medley Relay. Avery and her teammates got 2nd place in both of them while Phoenix Swim Club got 1st.